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Thread: Kaetwo's review of the new Axial Wraith

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Old 05-26-2011, 02:03 PM   #61
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I really appreciate you bringing that up. It's refreshing to have a company so active in the crawling community, especially one that listens to the needs of their customers.

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Old 05-26-2011, 03:23 PM   #62
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Great review kaetwo! Makes me want one even more.
I will have one of course...eventually. I'm also really interested in seeing what the aftermarket brings for this rig. But its great to see that the RTR version
can handle just about anything and everything you throw at it. Is for sure
gonna change our hobby.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:34 AM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axial View Post
You may not need the beef tubes, these are one piece solid axles and we went fairly thick on the tube part of it. It should be really strong.

I would recommend the Universal Joint Axles that we will have available for it, they are based on the same design as what is on the XR10 and are really strong. They also provide additional steering angle beyond the stock stub axle/dogbone set up. Part number can be found on the box and in the instructions but we haven't officially released them yet so there is no pricing as of yet.

We have an email newsletter you can sign up for on our site near the bottom right of the page. Once signed up you will get notifications on any new items we release as well as any news pertaining to Axial.

Come on man, you're killing us..... When is the release date????
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Old 05-27-2011, 12:15 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BGGruff View Post
Great review kaetwo! Makes me want one even more.
I will have one of course...eventually. I'm also really interested in seeing what the aftermarket brings for this rig. But its great to see that the RTR version
can handle just about anything and everything you throw at it. Is for sure
gonna change our hobby.
Thanks a ton!!! I will have a second part to my review up shortly as I've had a lot of emails and PM's asking about things that I failed to cover initially

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Come on man, you're killing us..... When is the release date????
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Old 05-27-2011, 12:52 PM   #65
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great review you have made me happy that i actually made the right choice in backordering one back in march now i hope to be the first in az to get one
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Old 05-28-2011, 08:19 PM   #66
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so basically its what we thought. Badass.
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Old 05-28-2011, 08:44 PM   #67
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Thanks Brett for letting me and the kid drive it a bit today. I can't wait to try one of these with some 3s brushless
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:02 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by joe daigle jr View Post
great review you have made me happy that i actually made the right choice in backordering one back in march now i hope to be the first in az to get one
Thanks! When you get one, your going to love it. It's getting more and more fun. My boy and I walked to Grandmas the other day and left in the dark, so we pulled the Wraith out and walked home jumping curbs, bushes and all sorts of things. It's a ton of fun to drive at night with just the lights.

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Originally Posted by ColquittCustom405 View Post
so basically its what we thought. Badass.
Amen!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Zach View Post
Thanks Brett for letting me and the kid drive it a bit today. I can't wait to try one of these with some 3s brushless
You bet!!! It was cool to meet with everyone and have them drive it. Now that I have part II to my review mostly done, I can get to the mods that I want to do. More on that soon

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Old 05-29-2011, 10:04 AM   #69
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This rig is going to be my first foray into the crawler world from my 1/8th scale brushless truggy. I want to match it up with a mamba pro and 3s.

Would the tekin 18.5 be a good choice for the wraith? I want it to be more of a scale trail/crawler then racer.

Thanks for the review! Love the story about you winning it for your son!
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:44 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiskey Throttle View Post
This rig is going to be my first foray into the crawler world from my 1/8th scale brushless truggy. I want to match it up with a mamba pro and 3s.

Would the tekin 18.5 be a good choice for the wraith? I want it to be more of a scale trail/crawler then racer.

Thanks for the review! Love the story about you winning it for your son!
Thanks

I'm not really familiar with running brushless systems in crawlers as I've always been a brushed man, however, it would be a ton of fun to lay down some power in this rig and the 18.5 should still crawl fairly well.

I wish that I had more experience with it to tell you for sure.

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Old 05-30-2011, 11:55 AM   #71
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Now that I have had a week to really put the Wraith through its paces and take it apart and look things over a bit more closely, I thought it would be cool to do a part II to my original review.

I have had a lot of PMís and emails asking me to cover the following topics;

ē Packaging, Instructions and Misc. Parts
ē Electronics
ē Drive Train
ē Shocks
ē Body / Cage / Interior
ē Tires and Wheels
ē Hardware

Letís get started!

Packaging, Instructions and Misc. Parts

Packaging / Box Art
I havenít done a ton of reviews, but the ones that Iíve done, I typically donít cover packaging, but I have received so many PMís and emails asking about it, that I thought it warranted a quick note. Itís Awesome! Iím the type of guy that mounts the box art from all my Tamiya kits on the wall, because there so well done, and Axialís box art is no different (Thatís why I had Bender sign the box)

Instruction Manual
The instruction manual that Axial has put together is incredible. First and foremost they where written in English, not foreign language translated to English. Secondly there clear and straight to the point. The parts reference sheet is great as it gives you a full image and part number to work with. Itís what I have been using as a quick reference for answering questions about the rig. Keep in mind that I have yet to build a Wraith from scratch, so the instruction manual accuracy is something that I cannot comment on, however I can say that Iíve used the manual a lot over the past several days and itís as spot on.

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Misc. Parts
The miscellaneous parts bag that you get includes extra drive shafts, the spare interior parts such as the 2 rifles and several steering wheels as well as other various plastics. I was a little bummed out that it did not come with 2 Axial gate markers, but Iíll live

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Electronics

The electronics package that comes with the new kits is really quite good. In the past, the radios/ESC kits that came with the Axial Ready-to-Runs where for the most part disposable. They got the job done, but they quickly wore out with any heavy use. The new radio/ESC systems are very good and will allow a builder to grow with the system.

AX-3 / AR-3 Radio System
My Wraith kit came with the new AX-3 2.4 GHz radio system. Itís small enough that my 5 year old son can work the radio, but large enough that my gorilla hands could work it without feeling like I was going to crush it. What I like about the system (other than its 2.4 GHz) is that it has a charging jack on it. My kids are always leaving the radio on, so this makes it nice and easy for me to keep the radio up and working. Another feature that just floored me when I saw it was how small the receiver was. HOLY CRAP this thing is tiny!!!! And itís 3 Channel!!!!! Now I have yet to try and bind it with my DX-3R Spektrum system, but Iíll be sure to post my findings on this. It clearly states in the instruction manual that ďThe AX-3 transmitter will only bind with the AR-3 receiverĒ, so letís keep our fingers crossed. One last note about the radio system that is a nice touch and that is the Fail Safe feature. In the event that your transmitter runs low enough on battery power that it looses signal with the receiver, the receiver will automatically return the ESC to a neutral position preventing the rig from running away. This feature must be turned on manually (instructions can be found in the manual).

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AE-2 Electronic Speed Control (ESC)
The new AE-2 ESC from Axial is a great little ESC and is a tremendous improvement from their previous ready-to-run ESC. What makes it so great is that it has DRAG BRAKE!!!! Oh and itís fully programmable with the Castle Link (sold separately). Iíve included 3 screen shots of the Castle Link setup for this ESC and as you can see itís a pretty amazing little ESC for a ready-to-run. I still canít believe that this is included in a ready-to-run kit.

In the Axial instruction manual it states that ďLiPo Cut-Off set to ďONĒ from the factoryĒ. What itís actually set too is ďCutoff Voltage Ė Auto-Lipo (*)Ē. Now if youíre going to use a NiMH battery, be sure to turn this to ďOffĒ as the ESC will reduce your runtime by detecting a false low battery charge. For the first several battery packs, I noticed that my 5000 NiMH where dumping rather quickly. After changing the Lipo cutoff setting, the runtimes increased because the ESC was no longer detecting a low charge. This is something to remember when you get your kit. Other settings that can be changed with the Castle Link are Brake/Reverse Type, Reverse Throttle, Brake Amount, Drag Brake (which is set at 50% from the factory) and Motor Type.

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Now onto the technical specifications (taken from the Axial Instruction Manual);

Input Voltage Ė 6 Cell NiMH/2S LiPo
Size Ė 1.7Ē x 1.24Ē
Weight Ė 45 Grams
Motor Limit Ė 19T
On-Resistance FET - .0018
Rated/Peak Current Ė 106A Peak
Braking Current Ė 106A Peak
BEC Voltage / A Ė 5.0V 2.0A Peak
PWM Frequency Ė 6 KHZ

20T Motor
The motor that comes with the Wraith is fast enough, while still having enough low end grunt to do a bit of crawling. The motor is a typical closed end bell so it has less torque than a traditional EPIC or Yokomo end bell, but it does a nice job and itís another motor option for us scale junkies.

AS-2 Servo
The AS-2 servo is pretty simple by design with a 120oz at 6 volts it gets the job done for a short time. The bad thing about this servo is that it does not come with a ball bearing support for the servo output gear. My Wraith with a week of hard runtime has worn out the servoís bushing. The servo itself is still more than functional; it just has a lot of lateral slop. I will have to take the servo apart and see if I can locate a replacement bearing for it.

Lights
A night touch to this kit is the included AX24257 light kit, which includes 4 Ė white and 2 Ė red LED lights and the controller board. All the light buckets mount to the cage work with the wires tucked up and out of the way for a nice clean look.

Electronics Box
The electronics box is one of my favorite parts to this kit. Itsí small, water resistant and best of all it looks very close to a fuel cell. The electronics box houses the receiver and LED controller board and sits up underneath the hood. Itís a very simple and elegant design.

Last edited by kaetwo; 05-31-2011 at 09:50 PM.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:56 AM   #72
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Drive Train

Axles
For me the first thing that I noticed on the Wraith was the new off-set axles, however there is more to these axles than just functional good looks. Here are some of the highlights;

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Removable Diff Covers
Having a removable diff cover allows a builder to service and replace spools so much easier. I typically have two spools made for my scale rigs. An over drive spool, for rock type courses and a standard spool for courses containing more dirt. This easily accessible diff cover really makes it nice and easy to swap out or service them.

Pinned Bevel Gear Shafts
NO MORE SET SCREWS!!!! Did you get that? The new bevel gear shaft is now drilled through to allow a set screw pin to be used, reducing the chances of you loosing a drive shaft. Now I know they where released a bit ago, but I have yet to see one in the wild and Iím sick of taking mine to a machinist to have them drilled. Now there factory made and I couldnít be happier.

XR-10 Aluminum Knuckles and C Hubs
Standard aluminum XR-10 knuckles and C hubs fit like a charm on this rig so there is no waiting for after market parts (AX30760 and AX30762).

Modular design
Something that I really appreciate on an axle like this is its modular design. For example the shock mounts and 4-link mount are all separate pieces. This allows a builder the luxury of making/designing his/her own parts. For example leaf mounts? How about a 3-Link kit? The potential for modifications is endless.

Steering
WOW!!!! I noticed a lot more steering with these new XR-10 style steering knuckles and C hubs and with Axials new aftermarket universals (AX30780) the rig will get an additional 10 degrees more steering than the OEM setup.

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Tranny
The Wraith tranny is very similar to the traditional SCX-10 tranny, with the exception of a few tweaks.

Dig compatible
The Wraith tranny comes ready to install Axials dig unit (AX30793) and as such has a slightly different outdrive shaft, called a Dig Lockout shaft. This longer outdrive shaft allows the tranny to mate perfectly with the Axial dig unit.

Dust Cover
Axials new dust cover comes installed from the factory and is a nice welcome to the traditional open spur/pinion setup. I will be buying the dust cover assembly for all my Axial based rigs (AX8007.

Drive Lines
The Wraith drive lines are really cool, and there design makes them 100% rebuild able. The joint is all metal and mounts to the drive shaft via a keyed insert. The drive shafts themselves have changed in that they are now a multi splined design, making them more friction free. Only time will tell, but this design looks much stronger than the traditional universals and much easier to build. Long gone are the days of trying to snap a universal into the drive shaft, stabbing yourself in the hand while parts fly every which way.

Shocks

The Wraith shocks are your standard AX-10 shocks and work great. One thing that I thought was cool was the variable rate pistons that come with the kit. I have never used a variable rate piston on a crawler, but it will be interesting to see how the different rates work with this beast.

Body / Cage / Interior

Body
The lexan panels that are included have a wicked cool paint job and really set off the Wraith with a fast and rugged look. I measured the thickness of the lexan and its .040Ē thick, so strength shouldnít be an issue. All the lexan panels are fairly simple shapes so for those vendors that specialize in vinyl wraps, this is going to be a haven for custom work.

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Cage
The cage work is incredibly intricate. The entire foundation and structure from the shocks to the tranny are all built around the cage work. I have never noticed any undo flex, or quirky behavior due to it all being made from plastic. In fact itís this plastic design that gives it the resilience that it has. I have jumped, dropped, slammed, flipped, rolled and bashed the crap out of this rig and itís still holding up perfectly.

Something that I can really appreciate is the finished look even underneath the body panels. Taking off the roof panel for example gives the rig a whole new look and really shows off the finished product. Itís simply incredible!!!!

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Interior
I have taken a few shots of the interior, but until you see it up close, you canít really appreciate how much work is put into its design, fit and finish. The bends and angles that the interior has to work around is incredible and it really makes the rig look amazing. One thing with a rig like this is that there is nowhere to hide unsightly parts. Itís all out in the open and the interior of the Wraith could have been a huge mistake, but Axial nailed it. Here are some cool features of the interior;

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Seats
The seats are two piece, they weigh 54 grams each and recline. I hope Axial stocks a ton of these because I can see them in a lot of scale builds in the future.

Dash
The dash is a separate piece measuring 6Ē x .75Ē. I predict that it will be used in a lot of scale builds in the future as well.

Accessories
The Wraith comes with (AX80037) interior kit (guns and all, however there not installed LOL). This really finishes the interior off with a set of shifters, steering wheel and oh **** handle.

Tires and Wheels

If the Wraith had and Achilles heel it would be the wheel set. There not terrible, but there not the G35 sticky compound and there not weighted. What can you expect though? I predict that this will be the first upgrade guys make to the Wraith. The wheel set in stock form weigh 5.7 oz. Thatís light!!!! For my personal rig, I plan on having two wheel sets. The stock set for rock racing and the R35/Weighted set for crawling. As a test I tried to break the glue bead on the stock wheel setÖNot happening LOL!!! These are glued well and very clean.

I will say this about the stock tire. After a day of crawling with this rig on the rocks, the tires actually scrubbed in and began working much better. They also turn blue over time LOL!!!!

Hardware

The only thing that I wanted to mention here was that itís all hex head hardware and that gets two thumbs up from me.

Conclusions

Axial has once again hit a major home run with the Wraith. Itís fun at high speeds, its fun to jump, its fun to race and its fun to crawl. There is a huge potential for creative modifications with this rig. In the world of RC, itís nearly impossible to design a unique rig these days, and Axial has done the impossible.

Well done!!!!

(Note: All images are listed in order that they are referenced in the review)


Last edited by kaetwo; 05-31-2011 at 09:53 PM.
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:27 PM   #73
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The review just keeps getting better and better Great Job!!!!
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:36 PM   #74
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Great (continued) review, Brett! Thanks so much for taking the time to share with us.
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Old 05-30-2011, 04:48 PM   #75
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Thanks guys!!!

Here is a quick video that PinchFlat shot and edited of the Wraith on the rocks. The battery wasn't 100% charged, but you can get a feel for how stable it is on the climbs and how it jumps.



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Old 05-30-2011, 04:51 PM   #76
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Good video, horrible VH cover.
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Old 05-30-2011, 05:23 PM   #77
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Indeed
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Old 06-01-2011, 09:08 AM   #78
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Hi Kaetwo,
Is that possible to put this rig on the scx10 C-CHANNEL FRAME to make it a scale truck? thanx!
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Old 06-01-2011, 09:57 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kc092755 View Post
Hi Kaetwo,
Is that possible to put this rig on the scx10 C-CHANNEL FRAME to make it a scale truck? thanx!
I'm sure theres a way but I wouldn't bother doing so if that's what your looking to do try doing something like this rig.
http://www.rccrawler.com/forum/showthread.php?t=137699
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:48 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by dubAron View Post
I'm sure theres a way but I wouldn't bother doing so if that's what your looking to do try doing something like this rig.
http://www.rccrawler.com/forum/showthread.php?t=137699
Thanx for the info,
What I meant is I am planning to buy a Scx10 and mod it to a Land Rover D90 or Jeep Wrangler, just want to know can I do the same thing if I buy a Wraith and put it on Scx10's C-channel frame? thanx!

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